Mayor Daniel Dodge has taken exception to the Grand Jury Report with a “Media Release” on city letterhead. He wrote, “I am very disappointed in the inaccurate and misleading information presented in the Santa Cruz County Grand Jury 2010-2011 Report”. And, that he was “shocked” with “glaring errors” and responded to each section of the Report, item per item.
He took exception on the Manabe-Ow project and wrote that a “detailed discussion” was addressed on the need of Redevelopment Funding in Chapter 5 of the 2008 Specific Plan. In neither the Specific Plan or in Chapter 5 does it state that we needed to designate that farmland property to “blight” so the city could use Redevelopment Agency (RDA) money to assist developer George Ow with “infrastructure improvements”. What the Plan clearly stated in Chapter 5 was that “Developers/property owners will bear the primary responsibility to fund and construct the site and infrastructure improvements”. “Misleading”? Maybe “Bait and Switch” is more like it considering that developer/owner George Ow has yet to commit how much he is willing to pony up and when.
Of the Fire Truck, Mayor Dodge wrote that “The purchase of the Fire Truck met the criteria for a sole source purchase and was approved in a public meeting by the city council.” Yes, the city council approved the purchase of a fire truck but what they were not told was that it would take over three years before expecting delivery and were “mislead” about the condition of the truck. A report to the city council stated the fire truck was in “excellent condition”. If that was a fact, why were the Pasadena City Council advised by their fire department to trade-in the truck because it was a financial burden to maintain, and only had a value of approximately $20,000?
Mayor Dodge also wrote, “The invoice from the vendor was a binding legal contract between the city and Fire Trucks Plus for the Fire Truck.” I don’t know what information our mayor has to render such a legal opinion or which “Invoice” he is referencing because I have four separate Invoices. Also, the check the city issued for $225,000 to Fire Truck Plus clearly states it is for a 1992 Pearce Lance not the 1999 KME we purchased. Mayor Dodge may want to ask City Attorney Alan Smith if this fact changes the legality of what constitutes a “Contract” in this situation. What is also questionable in this transaction is that invoices for the Pearce Lance and KME list identical costs for “Refurbishments”, training, lettering, taxes and cost for the truck. What are the chances of that happening?